"If we don’t pass health insurance reform, the country will go bankrupt" Obama

I predict that if we don’t watch out, the likes of Larry Summers will strip away whatever social safety nets we still have in place, sacrificed on the altar of No Deficits.

I predict that whose with assets above a value will become ineligible for SSI and Medicare if born after a certain date.

This is what Brazil’s former Secretary of the Environment, Jose Lutzenburger, wrote to Summers when Larry was at the World Bank in 1991:

"Your reasoning is perfectly logical but totally insane… Your thoughts [provide] a concrete example of the unbelievable alienation, reductionist thinking, social ruthlessness and the arrogant ignorance of many conventional ‘economists’ concerning the nature of the world we live in… If the World Bank keeps you as vice president it will lose all credibility. To me it would confirm what I often said… the best thing that could happen would be for the (World) Bank to disappear."

This letter is in response to a memo Larry had written while at World Bank.

A snapshot in time can provide an insight into the hearts and minds of people. Our economic future is in the hands of Larry Summers and his gang of like-minded thinkers. Here is a snapshot of Mr. Summers heart, when he thought no one was looking:

INTERNAL MEMO
DATE: December 12, 1991
TO: Distribution
FR: Lawrence H. Summers
Subject: GEP

Lawrence Summers

‘Dirty’ Industries: Just between you and me, shouldn’t the World Bank be encouraging MORE migration of the dirty industries to the LDCs [Less Developed Countries]? I can think of three reasons:

1) The measurements of the costs of health impairing pollution depends on the foregone earnings from increased morbidity and mortality. From this point of view a given amount of health impairing pollution should be done in the country with the lowest cost, which will be the country with the lowest wages. I think the economic logic behind dumping a load of toxic waste in the lowest wage country is impeccable and we should face up to that.

2) The costs of pollution are likely to be non-linear as the initial increments of pollution probably have very low cost. I’ve always though that under-populated countries in Africa are vastly UNDER-polluted, their air quality is probably vastly inefficiently low compared to Los Angeles or Mexico City. Only the lamentable facts that so much pollution is generated by non-tradable industries (transport, electrical generation) and that the unit transport costs of solid waste are so high prevent world welfare enhancing trade in air pollution and waste.

3) The demand for a clean environment for aesthetic and health reasons is likely to have very high income elasticity. The concern over an agent that causes a one in a million change in the odds of prostrate cancer is obviously going to be much higher in a country where people survive to get prostrate cancer than in a country where under 5 mortality is is 200 per thousand. Also, much of the concern over industrial atmosphere discharge is about visibility impairing particulates. These discharges may have very little direct health impact. Clearly trade in goods that embody aesthetic pollution concerns could be welfare enhancing. While production is mobile the consumption of pretty air is a non-tradable.

The problem with the arguments against all of these proposals for more pollution in LDCs (intrinsic rights to certain goods, moral reasons, social concerns, lack of adequate markets, etc.) could be turned around and used more or less effectively against every Bank proposal for liberalization.

http://www.sustainableworld.org.uk/summersmemo.htm

Unfortunately, Mr. Lutzenburger was fired shortly after writing this letter.

Conversely, Mr. Summers was appointed the U.S. Treasury Secretary on July 2nd, 1999, and served through the remainder of the Clinton Administration. Later he was named president of Harvard University.

Ibid

Heartless enough? Economically sound, for sure. But a price on the life of a human based on their income, and an attitude that low wage humans are less harmed by polluting industries. We, the people of the world, are not plastic Monopoly pieces, Mr. Summers. We are all equal in the eyes of God, Mr. Summers. We are all equal in the eyes of each other, Mr. Summers.

I predict that we will witness the unravelling of whatever remnants of the New Deal that still exist, after 60 years of assault by the heartless, reductionist "free market thinkers" like Larry Summers. This will happen swiftly. Be prepared.

The Deficit will become the favored patient and nothing will stand in the way of curing the Deficit.

Lawrence Summers has too much history on the record proving that his economic policies are all that Mr. Lutzenburger said.

Those in politics with any modicum of heart and its human compassion use people like Summers. They delegate the hard choices to a man known to have no feelings, no heart, and no regard for the stress and harm his Economic Quant, Free Market Worshipping Cabal causes.

Obama had delegated our fate into this man’s hands.

Welcome to the United States Shock Treatment.

When it is over, all will be privatized, wages will be low, and many will die needlessly, just like they have, are, and do everyday. We may become borderless.

Like the predictions of the past, few will listen.

There is another way. But cognitive dissonance stands in the way. If another way proved effective, the millions of lives destroyed at the hands of the Milt Friedman devotees like Summers, would have been avoidable. They would be proven wrong.

And NOTHING will ever be allowed to prove the deluded devotees of free-market thinkers WRONG.

Stinken Thinken is here to stay, sadly, unless the thinking stinkers are banished from participating in public "service".

HOW WILL THIS BE ACHIEVED?

As concern grows about our nation’s fiscal sustainability and fear of a spiraling deficit intensifies, The Center for the Study of the Presidency and Congress (CSPC) will be presenting recommendations to the Senate Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee to help resolve our troubling fiscal future. The hearing will address why the creation of an independent Fiscal Future Commission is necessary to achieving our nation’s economic recovery and maintaining its long-range freedom of action.

The first panel will feature Senators Kent Conrad (D-ND) and Judd Gregg (R-NH), the Chairman and Ranking Member of the Senate Budget Committee, who will provide analysis about their bipartisan Congressional initiative, “The Bipartisan Task Force for Responsible Fiscal Action Act of 2009.” They will be followed by an expert panel featuring Former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan and Peter G. Peterson Foundation CEO and former U.S. Comptroller General David Walker, who will express their concern for our current fiscal situation and why the creation of such a Fiscal Future Commission is the best solution.

http://digbysblog.blogspot.com/2009/12/feel-magic-by-digby-guess-what-business.html

WHEN?

When: December 17, 2009 at 10:00AM

Where: Dirksen Senate Office Building, Room 342

Panelists:

Senator Kent Conrad (D-ND)
Chairman, Senate Budget Committee

Senator Judd Gregg (R-NH)
Ranking Member, Senate Budget Committee

The Honorable Alan Greenspan
President, Greenspan Associates, LLC, Former Chairman of the United States Federal Reserve Board

The Honorable David Walker
President and CEO, Peter G. Peterson Foundation, Former U. S. Comptroller General and Head of Government Accountability Office

IBID

HOW FAIR AND BALANCED IS THIS PANEL?

Repeal the BushCo tax cuts: NO

Cut SSI and Medicare: Yes

WAKE UP

THEY DON’T CARE ABOUT YOU AND YOUR FAMILY!